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Decorating Your First Home on a Budget? What to Expect.

Moving into your first home can be one of the most exciting life decisions you’ll ever make, but it can be quite daunting, especially if you’re on a tight budget. Whether you’re moving into your first newly purchased home or renting a space for the first time, here are some decorating ideas and tips to help you put together a fantastic space without breaking the bank. 

Where to Start

Firstly, here are some factors to consider when decorating your new living space. Many people are faced with the decision of where to begin decorating, but it goes without saying that the bedroom where you spend most of your hours in the home should be the first place on your decorating plans. You’ll have to decide on what items to purchase and this is where planning and strategizing comes to play. Start off with a bed and beddings–getting clean sheets at discounted prices shouldn’t be hard. Leave off bulky items like dressers for when you purchase large furniture. Next you should get practical floor covering, paintings and wall art if they’re your thing, not forgetting succulent plants fit for the bedroom. These are all small items that bring any living space to life and can be gotten used or brand-new at the barest minimum cost. However, regular checks on your budget are advised to ensure you do not overspend.  

Next Steps

Step 1

Next on your decorating list after your bedroom should be the kitchen. The bedroom and kitchen are two of the most functional spaces in the home and where you’ll be spending much of your time. You’ll have to sleep, and you’ll have to eat as well, even if you don’t get to cook immediately. Luckily, for us Canadians, many homes come fully stocked with a refrigerator, microwave, and sometimes even a dishwasher, so your kitchen won’t be needing many items that would require huge spending. Funds that would’ve been splurged on a gigantic double-door fridge should now go towards purchasing that essential air fryer and coffeemaker. Also, remember you’ll have to stock up on groceries at some point, so limit your kitchen gadgets purchase to the immediate must haves.

Step 2

The bathroom should follow suit after the kitchen. Bath Mats for the bathroom are a must considering the amount of liquid you get in contact with within this space. Bathmats work as a practical item as well as a decorative piece. Getting an aesthetically pleasing mat without compromising on quality even on a tight budget shouldn’t be that big of a deal. To keep your bathroom looking and smelling fresh, purchase potpourris and air fresheners, and not forgetting indoor plants, which are renowned for their air filtering and oxygen producing qualities. These will not only give your bathroom an instant facelift, but help to keep it fresh and odour free always.

Step 3

It goes without saying that the living room and dining spaces should be the last to decorate for anyone on a tight budget. This is because living room furniture pieces are not only some of the most expensive household items, but they are equally usually bulky in size, especially when purchased fairly used, thereby requiring delivery to your home, which would of course cause a huge dent on your pockets. A little floor covering however, should be considered first for the living room before you begin to shop around for the best affordable furniture pieces. You can always purchase used furniture and upgrade to better or brand-new items later when you have a bigger budget. Avoiding decorating the biggest space where the most expensive items in the home are usually found will go a long way in helping you stretch your finances. Afterall, in these days of social media, you can always catch up on your favourite entertainment and access shows on your mobile devices. 

How to Shop

Depending on the size of your new home, your best bet to have a living space you can be proud of whenever you walk into it is to shop with the hope to upgrade in the future. Strategize and come up with concrete plans on what and where you’ll purchase your furniture and other household items. A good pointer is flea market, online stores offering discounted and sometimes free items such as Facebook marketplace. You can get nearly everything you’ll need to fully furnish your home from their different sections and categories of items for different spaces of the home. From used and fairly new furniture pieces, electronic gadgets, to rugs, curtains, kitchen items, and even garden tools. Almost everything can be found online and in discount stores. 

Chinenye Emezie | Assistant Editor

Summer 2024

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